Senate 2008 Guru: Following the Races

Keeping a close eye on developments in the 2008 U.S. Senate races

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Tuesday Tidbits

  • Yesterday, I hoped that ten readers of the blog would contribute to Tom Allen's campaign to oust Susan Collins via the Expand the Map! ActBlue page. Unfortunately, zero readers were able to contribute yesterday, making for a sad Guru. C'mon, even after all the holiday shopping you have ten bucks left over to help Tom Allen beat the dishonest, hypocritical Susan Collins, right? Please chip in if you can!

  • RealClearPolitics has their latest list of the ten most competitive Senate races. They've removed South Dakota from their top ten, leaving Louisiana as the sole Democratic-held seat. The other nine are all GOP-held, including Mississippi making its first appearance, in the ten-spot.

  • Mississippi: Speaking of Mississippi, there may be ethical issues that could cripple Republican Roger Wicker's chances at the Senate. Apparently, Wicker and aerospace company Aurora Flight Sciences have a questionably cozy relationship. In 2006, Aurora was Wicker's top campaign contributor; and, then in 2007, Wicker secures a juicy little earmark for Aurora. The relationship is furthered by the fact that Wicker's former Chief of Staff works for the lobbying outfit that lobbies for, you guessed it, Aurora. With Trent Lott and Chip Pickering expected to bolt to K Street, and with Republican corruption stories again flowing like water, this story has the potential to blow up should Wicker get appointed to the Senate or run for the seat opened up by Lott's resignation. Stay tuned! (HT: Cotton Mouth)

  • Virginia: Even with Republican Jim Gilmore tanking in the polls, George Macaca Allen re-iterated that he is "definitely not interested" in joining the 2008 Senate race. (Of course not - Mark Warner would embarrass him.)

  • Kentucky: The Politico profiles Mitch McConnell's spending tug-of-war. On one side are the Bush administration and hard-line conservatives looking to slash domestic spending where ever possible; and, on the other side is McConnell's own desire to bring home piles of pork as he ramps up his re-election bid, pork that Robert Novak thinks may be necessary for McConnell's "political survival." Also in Kentucky news, Jim Bunning says he's going to run again in 2010. With Ben Chandler on deck for the Democrats, I hope so! Bunning barely squeaked by now-Lieutenant Governor Dan Mongiardo 51-49 in 2004 (even with George W. Bush beating John Kerry 60-40 in Kentucky), and Chandler may be the most popular Democrat in the state.

  • Nebraska: Meet Scott Kleeb.

  • Maine: Local media is charging that Susan Collins is "selling out Maine workers" when she voted for the free trade deal with Peru. Turn Maine Blue reminds us that Tom Allen opposed the deal. Just another reason to contribute to Tom Allen.


    Blogger Ari said...

    Count me as a giver-- I just forked over $10 for Tom Allen. We can't have a sad Guru, after all!

    12:53 PM, December 11, 2007  
    Blogger Neal said...

    Looking at the top ten list. VA and NM are solid Democratic Takeovers- Expect a Double Digit victory for Warner(VA) and Udall(NM). Warner/Gilmore(VA2008)race will similar to Casey/Santorum(PA2006). Udall/Wilson(NM2008)race will be similar to the Brown/Dewine(OH2006)

    I expect the race in NH to narrow but Shaheen is favored to defeat Sununu. This race may be similar to the Whitehouse-Chafee race(RI2006).

    CO and MN will be the similar to the McCaskill-Talent(MO)- It will go down the wire with Democrat edging ahead.

    OR and AK will be similar to the Burns-Tester race.

    3:47 PM, December 11, 2007  
    Blogger VA Blogger said...

    Thank you once again, Neal. Its been a while... almost five days. I see your analysis hasn't changed a single bit.

    3:50 PM, December 11, 2007  
    Blogger Neal said...

    VA Blogger
    Blog Name Team Members
    I don't want to have a blog
    Our Auto World Lisa Aiken molly Brad Lindsay indiapaleale DBuro Group 1 C. Styles Government 490 Group 4 Ali Alhaj

    3:59 PM, December 11, 2007  
    Blogger Eric In Manassas said...

    Anyone know if there is anymore word from Moore? Is he waiting to see if the election thing is fixed up, or what? I can't imagine Missippi being better than a Leans Republican without former AG Moore in the race.

    4:09 PM, December 11, 2007  
    Blogger Ari said...

    Neal, I don't think Oregon will be like Montana-- Oregon is a much bluer state, and will go blue at the Presidential level, which is the most important factor in Merkley's favor. If Merkley wins, it'll be by a larger margin than Tester's victory over Burns. If Smith wins, it's because he's an anomaly among Republicans-- perceived by the voters as an independent voice, even if that perception stems entirely from election-year posturing.

    Alaska, on the other hand, will definitely be comparable to the Burns-Tester example.

    I disagree with you that New Hampshire will narrow; the state has had a decisive realignment in the past four years. Colorado is going to be the nail-biter. New Hampshire is all but in the bag, as long as Shaheen doesn't come off too wishy-washy on the issues.

    4:12 PM, December 11, 2007  
    Blogger Johnny C said...

    I am surprised that NM outranks NH. To my way of thinking Shaheen's statewide organizational advantages make that a more likely pick up then NM. Although I think it likely the Dems will get both. I expect the NM numbers to close a great deal once the Reps pick a candidate (no matter which candidate).

    Neal I think it is dangerous to look only to 2006 for precedents. NH is not RI and I do not think the Whitehouse-Chaffee race is instructive in NH. I agree that both CO and MN will be tight to the end but I rank CO as lean D and MN as a tossup.

    Right now VA is the only guaranteed "take it to the bank" pick up on either side.

    Rather be D than R but Real Clear Politics is right that Collins, Coleman, and Smith make the difference between a respectable net gain of two or three for the Dems and an exceptional net gain of six or seven.

    4:19 PM, December 11, 2007  
    Blogger Neal said...

    VA- (Warner-D vs Gilmore-R) 20 point spread favoring Warner(D)

    NM- (Udall-D vs Wilson-R) 15 point spread favoring Udall(D)

    NH (Shaheen-D vs Sununu-R)- 10 point spread favoring Shaheen(D)

    CO- (Udall-D vs Schaffer-R) 5 point spread favoring Udall(D)

    AK,MN,and OR will be tossups

    4:38 PM, December 11, 2007  
    Blogger Neal said...

    i don't do those things

    4:48 PM, December 11, 2007  
    Blogger Neal said...

    i don't do those things

    I am a respectable guy and I don't do these kinds of things

    4:49 PM, December 11, 2007  
    Blogger John Leek said...

    We haven't heard anything more from Moore in Mississippi.

    Thanks for the Hat Tip!

    7:39 PM, December 11, 2007  
    Blogger Matthew said...

    See, I kind of disagree with Neal because I think that Mark Warner will beat Gilmore by a much larger margin than Bob Casey beat Rick "Welcome Home, Sanatarium" (thank you, Metallica). Gilmore should as for appointment as Ambassador to Iraq. I'm sure that Ryan Crocker could use a break from the foolishness.

    Just get an ad like this...

    And we win every competitive seat.... Votevets did a hell of a job last cycle.

    11:24 PM, December 11, 2007  
    Blogger LP said...

    New Mexico is also making it's first appearance. And I think New Mexico is deservedly #2. Udall is the top Democratic recruit and is running unopposed in the primary.

    Meanwhile, Pearce and Wilson, while both top recruits for the GOP, are going to be in a nasty primary battle. And I mean, it will be NASTY. Pearce won't back down from anyone and Wilson won't hesitate to go negative.

    So this should be exciting. For Dems at least.

    1:18 AM, December 12, 2007  
    Blogger Michael Westmoreland-White said...

    In the RCP top 10, this Kentuckian was quite pleased to see that McConnell is so vulnerable that we almost tied for # 10 without even an official Democratic challenger, yet! TWO different columnists on TWO consecutive days, in the Louisville Courier-Journal have just rebuked KY Dems for taking so long to get a worthwhile candidate to take on McConnell! So, maybe now we'll get our act together. I hope Andrew Horne announces soon so that we can start beating the ground for votes for him!!
    The KY Democratic Party was deeply eroded in the late '90s and that has made it difficult for us to take advantage of McConnell's newfound vulnerability. Too many of the bigger names want to wait until they get an easier target with Bunning in '10--but we need to take down McConnell. He's the big fish--obstructionist-in-chief.

    I largely bought RCP's rankings which is why I wish I had $10 for Tom Allen--Susan Collins should not be doing so well.

    I'm worried about Landrieu.

    7:12 AM, December 12, 2007  

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